THE LIGHTNING EXPRESS
(PLEASE, MR. CONDUCTOR!)
Sung by: Mrs. W.B. Apple
Recorded on 7/20/62
Click here to listen to the original recording
Had just started out on its way.
The people who were on board of the train
Seemed to be happy and gay,
Except a little boy on a seat by himself,
Was reading a letter he had.
Was plain to be seen by the tears in his eyes
That the contents made his heart sad.
The strange old conductor then started around,
Taking tickets from everyone there.
Upon reaching the side of the boy,
He gruffly demanded his fare.
"I haven't any ticket," the boy replied,
"Though I will pay back someday."
"Then I'll put you off the next station, my boy,"
But he stopped when he heard the boy say:
Chorus: "Please, Mr. Conductor,
don't put me off of your train,
For the dearest friend I have in this world
Is waiting me now in vain.
She's expected to die any moment;
Oh, she may not live through the day,
And I want to bid Mother goodbye, sir,
Before God takes her away."
A little girl seated on a seat close by
Said, "If you put that boy off, it's a shame."
She took off his hat, a collection she made,
And paid the boy's fare on the train.
"I'm much obliged, Miss, for your kindness to me."
"You're welcome; you need never fear."
Every time the conductor would come through the car,
These voices would ring in his ear:
(Dr. Wolf: "Do you know where you learned that?"
Mrs. Apple: "Oh, I just learned it from . . . I imagine I learned this from the Linebarger girls. They had . . . There were three of those girls, and they knew more songs than anybody, and I'm pretty sure I learned that from them.")
Also found in Randolph, Vol. IV, #720, "Please, Mr. Conductor!"